Dollars and Diagrams

How to Prioritize: Retirement vs. College

College Planning, Retirement Funding

“How do I prioritize saving for my own retirement versus saving for my children’s college education?”

The most fitting analogy is the message, “in the event of an emergency, please put on your oxygen mask before assisting others.”

You very well might love the idea of your child graduating debt free from college more than the idea of becoming financially independent at age 62.

I am using the phrase “financially independent” instead of retirement intentionally.  I define “financially independent” as the financial ability to stop working at your choice.  Your plan no longer requires your ongoing employment income.

If you do not have the cash flow to simultaneously fund both goals, then you must choose to fund “financial independence.” Why? There is a multitude of ways to pay for college:

  • Part-time Job(s)
  • Become an RA
  • Student Loans

You cannot exactly borrow your way into becoming “financially independent.”


Information in this material is for general information only and not intended as investment, tax, or legal advice. Please consult the appropriate professionals for specific information regarding your individual situation prior to making any financial decision.


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10 Actions To Take 10 Years Before Retirement

In this paper we discuss 10 actions you should take to develop and deploy a successful long-term wealth plan. It will help you make decisions about your financial journey today and well into your retirement chapter.

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